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Messages - Rhodesman73

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Buying / Re: WTB Rhodes Pickups 3"
« on: October 03, 2013, 09:08:47 AM »
What year piano?  I do Rhodes repairs and restorations and have a bunch of pickups for several salvaged pianos.


For Sale / 1977 Suitcase 73 for sale - 90% restoration
« on: January 27, 2013, 05:56:28 PM »
I have a 1977 suitcase fo sale.  I've done extensive restoration to the unit....bottom has all new vinyl, grill cloth, hardware, and the electronics have been gone through. As I've done in the past, I've also upgraded and improved the speaker mountings to make it easier, if necessary, to remove the speakers.  The speakers are now mounted with insert nuts, stainless steel screws and compression washers, and rubber grommets.  No more stripped mounting screws out of the baffle board and having to remove the grill cloth to remove those stubborn screws. 

The keyboard case has new vinyl for the center wrap..but the end pieces were in great shape and are original.  It has new corners and sphynx glides.  The handle hardware, hinges, and latches were buffed out and look almost new.  I've done a complete grommet replacement and excapement adjustment.  The keys have been restored and lubricated, I replace the worn hammer tips and felts with a set of gently used - almost new - units.  Looks and plays Great.

For more information and pictures email me at

Here are some before and after pics of the keyboard section.  1977 Suitcase 73

Parts, Service, Maintenance & Repairs / Re: Who works on 4-pin amps?
« on: August 08, 2012, 07:46:15 PM »
I was planning on sending the amp module to Vintage Vibe for repair, but on their site it reads that they are not taking any amp repairs until further notice.

Does anyone recommend a shop where I can send it? 

Bob Ackerman, at Cascio Interstate Music in New Berlin, WI., is great at all sorts of amp repair.  I took my Suitcase control unit and the two power units to him and had them back in 3 days.  They sound like new.  Call him at 1-262-789-7600 of check out the website at

Superb work Rhodesman, it looks new!!
Thank you.  I hope to post some pics of the top soon.

For Sale / Re: Rhodes 73 preamp and suitcase amp w/cable for sale
« on: August 08, 2012, 12:29:29 PM »
  I getting rid of my preamp, cable, and suitcase amp, from a 77'rhodes.
I'm in central PA.   Feel free to ask any questions.  $400 firm.
Do you still have the items?


For Sale / Re: NOS Harp Cover For Sale on eBay $50 - Milwaukee
« on: August 08, 2012, 12:27:13 PM »
Seems it would have been worthwhile to take a picture of the actual product. I doubt it's a scam but it's a little odd.
Not a scam.  It's real.


For Sale / Re: NOS Harp Cover For Sale on eBay $50 - Milwaukee
« on: August 08, 2012, 12:26:04 PM »
I saw that yesterday. I guess he doesn't want to break the factory seal but I wouldn't be comfortable bidding on a cardboard box.
I broke the factory seal a couple of weeks ago to check to see the condition of the harp.  It's new, no cracks, marks, or anything.  The original bag that it was wrapped in was brittle and fell apart.  I repacked the cover with packing peanuts for protection during shipping.


For Sale / Re: NOS Harp Cover For Sale on eBay $50 - Milwaukee
« on: August 08, 2012, 12:24:31 PM »
$6.48? Even if that's dealer cost, 100% markup would only be $13.00!
That' the shipping cost from C.B.S. in California.  And yes, it is a NOS from 1977... I got it from my uncles estate.

I have a 1977 Suitcase 73 that I've just finished restoring...or at least to 95% of new.  Here are some pics of the bottom.  B4 and after.  All new vinyl and grill cloth.  The electronics brought up to full working order, I redid the speaker mounting so that if you blew a speaker on the front baffle, you wouldn't have to worry about having to take the grill cloth off if the bolt stripped out of the baffle board.

Parts, Service, Maintenance & Repairs / Re: Rewinding Rhodes Pickups
« on: August 08, 2012, 11:51:31 AM »
I have some extra pickups for sale on eBay for $5 each plus mailing.  They've been cleaned and have been checked.
sean - thanks for the help and the reference info from the forum.  i see that guitar pickups typically use 42 AWG wire, but based on the data from the two pickups cited, i think i'll try it with 36 AWG first.

on one of the three dead pickups, i can see a green dot where a wire turns the corner of the pickup bobbin and figured that was copper corrosion.  given the fact that i'm about 15 miles away from Disney World, i am starting to worry about the life of this very great sounding keyboard.  the worst case scenario is buying pickups at $15 a pop time 73 notes = a cool thousand semolians!  (or going into the pickup rewinding business as a sideline to playing music).

thanks again - ed

Preamps, Modifications & Upgrades / Re: The old legs question
« on: March 24, 2011, 08:10:58 PM »
Why not just buy a "Z" those made by QuikLoc.  It would be more portable and convienent than a table top type of platform, really sturdy, can be adjusted up and down for playing standing or sitting, and you won't have to risk doing damage to your suitcase piano by trying to mount leg flanges to it. I have a QuikLoc Z-726 - rated at 250# total weigh capacity.  No problem holding the rhodes.


The picture on the internet is deceving.  Because most digital cameras have a really "hot" flash, certain things show a blue tinge in pictures as does the pictures of my piano.  The black/white/silver is the closest to the original.  The silver/blue grill cloth was used on the Fender "Silver Face" amps in the 70's.  Some was silver/blue and some was silver/turquoise depending on the year.  The black/white/silver cloth was used on the 60's black faced Fender Amps and the suitcase pianos.  The actual cloth was called the Fender Brown or Tan grill cloth.  It has a redish /brow stripe in it and is no longer available from any supplier.


I've been in the process of refurbishing / restoring a 1977 Suitcase Piano - 73.  I've just finished the speaker cabinet. Here are two before and after pictures.  All new vinyl, grill cloth ( Fender Black/White/Silver), new corners, feet, all stainless steel screws with new nickle plated finishing washers.  The electronics have been completely gone through by my tech.  I've upgraded the speaker mounting by replacing the "through the baffle screws and apron nuts" with insert nuts, stainless steel bolts with neoprene washers and steel washers. I've kept the original legs and the piano still has the original logo which has some minor scuff marks on it..but this too will be replaced.  Next is to start on the piano top.

I've seen keyboard players use xylophone mallets or drumsticks and tap on the tone bars with the sustain pedal down to get a certain effect.

The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Re: Dating a Satellite Speaker
« on: March 06, 2011, 06:36:22 PM »
I just checked the serial numbers next to the model number on both the master and slave cab.  The Master is 3626, and the slave is 5635.  Any idea as to the year(s) these were built?


Other Keyboards & Software Synths / Re: Yamaha CP-80
« on: March 06, 2011, 06:27:41 PM »
The Yamaha CP 70's and CP80's were the thing to have back in the 80's, but unless you want it as a collectors item, or to play it in your house, you're better off with a digital.  I never realy liked the sound of metallic or brassy.  Today one can buy a cheap digital with a better sounding accoustic piano...and at a fraction of the weight to haul areound.

The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Dating a Satellite Speaker
« on: March 04, 2011, 07:44:38 PM »
Does anyone know how to find the date of manufacture of the Satellite Speaker Systems?  I just bought a pair without the preamp - a Master and a Slave.  I'm not sure if the are 76 ore 77 models.  Can anyone help.


The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Re: action problem with 1976
« on: March 04, 2011, 07:42:32 PM »
Hi everyone.

I have a 1976 Stage with bare pedestals and white felt on plastic hammers. When I press some of the keys down, I hear a scraping sound and there is a little more resistance than other keys. It's happening for most of the keys, although seems to be a little more so in the  mid-range.

At first, I thought it was the bushings, but I lifted the hammer up and moved the key up and down and the sound was gone. Therefore, it has to be the way the hammer is contacting the pedestal. Is this a common symptom of needing to replace the felts? How do you know when the hammer felt needs to be replaced?

I tried cleaning the felt with a toothbrush and it actually did seem to help a little, but the scraping sound is still there. I'm guessing I need to replace the felt, but I didn't see any of the white hammer felt on Vintage Vibe's web site; just the red pedestal felt for $28. Are most people just putting new felt on the pedestal now, rather than putting it back on the hammer?

Also, I have some teflon powder and was toying with the idea of brushing some on the hammer felt with a toothbrush. Is that a bad idea? I thought I read a post before where someone was pleading with users on the forum not to use teflon there because it gets into the wood of the pedestals and makes it impossible to get something to stick to it later on.

I have a 1976 Stage 73 that had the same problem.  I work on Rhodes pianos quite a bit and I use a product called DRI-SLIDE.  It's a liquid with a Molybdenum disulfide base. I got it many years ago through a piano technician parts distributor ( cant remember the dealers name).  It lsts Freemont, MI as where it's made...but that was over 30 years ago.  It takes very little. I still have bbout 15% left of an 8 oz can  I put a little on each felt and let it soak in.  The liquid dries leaving what looks like a graphite film.  I also used a little on the key pivot pins / bushings.  I did that back in the early 80's and the piano still plays like a dream.

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